Monday, December 29, 2008

Great Grandmother Steps Into The Room


Her head small as a pecan.
Her body large as husks from corn.
Hi hey ya
hey yo.
She speaks in dreams.

Through narrow channels of the prairie
a stream of sheep pass into her head.
She tends them on the hill
where small rocks cluster
like a flock.

Moccasins tied to thick feet.
Her leggins dangle like puffin beaks.
She is from the north now.
Her dress fishskin.
Wooden snow goggles with slits for eyes.

Her mouth shriveled to a cedar berry
she speaks through the blue opening
in her head.
Her brittle dress crackles and her voice.
laughs with narrow vision
and her small words say to me

Diane Glancy

From Offering: Poetry and Prose (1988). Used with permission of the author.

Author's signed presentation copy to the Golda Meir Library. In his forward to this collection, Simon J. Ortiz celebrates Glancy's "vivid poetic insights into the landscape of Oklahoma and its Cherokee heritage." He suggests that in this work, Glancy goes "more deeply and comprehensively into the dimensions of her Cherokee and German/English birthright, which, to her, is more than a matter of cultural and genetic descent." Offering is illustrated by Terry John Swaby.

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